Atypon, Elsevier and Digital Science Collaborate to Deliver Usage Reporting

Technology initiative to benefit publishers, institutions and researchers

Scholarly publishers will soon be able to receive usage reporting from Mendeley, Elsevier’s leading Scholarly Collaboration Network (SCN), and Digital Science’s literature discovery tools, ReadCube, Papers, and Dimensions. These industry firsts are made possible by a collaboration led by Elsevier, Atypon, Digital Science and COUNTER develop a new standard for Distributed Usage Logging (DUL).

Technology and innovation have transformed researcher workflows significantly in recent years. Researchers today have more ways to access scholarly content, as well as new ways to share and collaborate on publisher platforms, aggregators, repositories and SCNs. As researchers increasingly access journal content through these off-library and off-campus platforms outside of standard COUNTER reporting channels – assessing true usage is extremely difficult. Most libraries evaluate their subscribed content using standard COUNTER reports that provide only a partial picture, which can lead to inaccurate assessments of the value of content under both subscription and open access business models.

To help address this issue, Mendeley and Digital Science will begin providing publishers with article-level usage on scholarly content accessed and shared via their tools. Developed with technical support and infrastructure from Crossref, and fully aligned with COUNTER’s Code of Practice Release 5, this data will be provided back to the original publisher and anonymized to the institution-level ensuring individual user privacy is preserved.

Beginning in early 2019, Atypon’s Literatum will be able to receive the article-level usage data generated from Mendeley and Digital Science to share with over 200+ of their publishing clients.  Elsevier will also be incorporating DUL data into the COUNTER-compliant reports available to their customers.

Benefits to publishers include:

  1. Providing customers with a wider range of usage events in a COUNTER compliant way, from sharing and reading platforms as well as the publishers’ own platform insight
  2. Providing authors with more comprehensive insights into the consumption of their articles
  3. Gaining better insight into how a publisher’s journals are consumed, to inform journal and portfolio development strategies

“Mendeley is about helping researchers build their research knowledge. Enabling seamless management, sharing and collaboration of scholarly content is part of that. We are working with publishers and libraries to support standardized ways to make this happen, and at the same time derive better insights into how content is being used and valued,” said Gaby Appleton, Managing Director of Mendeley.

“Core to our mission at Digital Science is to develop and support innovative solutions for the betterment of the broader research community,” says Robert McGrath, CEO of ReadCube. “Not only is this initiative frictionless for researchers, it also offers a simple and standardized way of interacting between content providers, libraries, and collaboration tools and platforms in order to create a flexible and sustainable ecosystem.”

“DUL makes it possible for usage metrics from across the publishing ecosystem to be consolidated on publishing platforms,” said Georgios Papadopoulos, Atypon’s CEO and Founder. “So finally, everyone gets a true picture of their content usage—publishers, librarians, research institutions, funders, and even authors.”

“It is great to see a core group of early adopters prove that this technology works. I hope that this will now encourage broad adoption by other publishers and platform providers in the scholarly communication ecosystem”, said Chris Shillum, Chair of the Distributed Usage Logging working group.

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